ANIMAL rights activists failed to stop the annual Fourth of July “pig scramble tradition” which has been going for more than 40 years.
Children in California, US, have long enjoyed the annual junior rodeo event, the only day in the year where they are allowed to chase and play with the baby pigs.
The annual “Pig Scramble” takes place in the California town of Woodside, and usually involves dozens of little piglets being freed into a rodeo ring with children chasing them around and trying to grab one for a prize.
Twenty-five animal rights activists turned up at the event in a bid to stop it but it went ahead as usual.
They said the event is traumatic for the animals and is not so great for the children either.
According to activists the event is teaching kids that it is alright to bully beings that are weaker and smaller than you.
Victor Aenlle, an organizer of the event, was quick to oppose their claims saying that no animals are harmed during the rodeo.
He said: “Kids are not trying to hurt the pigs, they are playing with the pigs and in turn the pigs are playing with the kids. What I see here is the best day the pigs will see in their entire lives.”
“I think this is just lack of tolerance and disrespect for people’s rights. We’ve been doing this rodeo for 40 years and there has not been once incident where a pig has been hurt or killed.”
“We have vets on call … a hospital standing by — there’s never been an incident of pigs being hurt on our property. I understand their point of view but we have ours.”
“We don’t want anybody coming here and pushing us and telling us what to do and what not to do. Everybody has a right to choose.”
His views were supported by a local resident Victor Aenlle who said: “Animal rights activists are messing with our history and traditions.”
Despite local residents asking to leave them alone, animal rights activists are not set to back down.
Jennifer Gonzales, the spokesperson for the Committee for Humane Woodside said: “The pigs are terrified — squealing, screaming, running in all directions. Those children are predators.”